Microchip RT-PCR coronavirus detection system announced

The current pandemic has created a demand for test kits that can be run with less amount of reagents while generating faster test results. Lumex Instruments’ microchip real-time PCR analyser, AriaDNA, by detecting SARS-CoV-2, has proven its ability to meet this demand. The Microchip RT-PCR coronavirus detection system based on AriaDNA can test up to seven patient samples in one run, which takes less than an hour, with low reagent consumption.

Erratic supply of laboratory wares and reagents, as well as bottlenecks created due to high demand and short supply of the test reagents, has created a delay in getting the population tested for SARS-CoV-2. Worldwide calls for widespread testing has increased the number of requests for PCR reagent supply. Current real-time PCR assays and PCR instruments consume large volumes of reagents (20 μL reaction), as assays are performed in PCR tubes or array plates. Lumex Instruments has developed the Microchip RT-PCR detection system with reagent consumption as low as 1.2 μL reaction. The system overcomes the limitation of reagent availability by 10-fold, increasing number of samples that can be analysed from a single box of reagents from 300 to 3000. 

The Microchip RT-PCR detection system provides sensitive, specific and fast detection of SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA. The system uses a pre-loaded microchip kit with primers and probes lyophilised in the microchip. The N1 and N2 primer-probes target regions within the SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid gene (N), and HsRPP30 targets RNase P gene present in the human genome. The system relies on the use of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-approved test kits and instructions. 

Real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) is the standard method of SARS-CoV-2 detection. Testing is performed on respiratory samples such as nasopharyngeal or oropharyngeal swabs, sputum, lower respiratory tract aspirates, bronchoalveolar lavage, and nasopharyngeal wash/aspirate or nasal aspirate.